Saturday, 23 December 2017

White is all right

It took two weeks, but we’ve finally pretty much settled into our new rental house. It’s still a bit upside down, but we’ve found spots for most of our stuff, and I’ve even managed to do a bit of Christmas decorating. Well, OK, I put up a tree ad hung a wreath :-) I highly recommend NOT moving two weeks before Christmas!

Our new rental house is completely different from our former rental house. It was also built in the ‘70s, but it looks like it could have been built 100 years ago. And it has FOUR levels – that’s a LOT of steps to go from the basement to the top floor! The cool thing is that the interior of this house is designed a lot like what I envision for our house. It has wide plank floors (although I like these ones better than ours because they’re real hardwood, not engineered), white walls (many are tongue & groove), simple white trim that’s also painted white, blue accents, wood beams & posts, and black door hardware.

Here’s the living room. The big windows are great, but the sun really beams in through them in the morning!


The two exterior doors on the main floor are painted blue. I suspect that all the doors were built specifically for this house.

white and blue 2

Heading up to the second floor…

staircase 2

The pointed tops on the doors are cool, but I see potential for heads whacking on the door frame if you don’t go through the middle of the opening!



I heard that the previous owner did a lot of painting in this house, so I’m guessing that all the tongue & groove that’s now white started out stained pine. If that’s the case, there was a LOT of pine in this house! But it was definitely a good call, because the white walls really brighten and open up the house. Now I’m feeling really good about my decision to go with a lot of white in our house :-)

KB sig

Tuesday, 12 December 2017

It’s not fancy, but it’s been home

When we moved to Nova Scotia, we thought we’d be living in our rental house for a year. Then that year became two years. And then two and a half years. And now we’re finally moving out – and moving into another rental house. UGH! I’m telling you, building a house yourself takes a loooonnnnggggg time!

When we first moved into our rental house, it was kinda… well, old and tired. Nothing really wrong with it, but not much had changed since it was built in the ‘70s. Luckily our landlord has been super-cool and bought new light fixtures and appliances and faucets and even let us make over the kitchen.

I don’t have many before pictures, but here are a few afters…

exterior front

from bedroom

bed and table

corner 3 rs

KB by the Sea - bedroom 4

orange oar

blue railing

kitchen 2

And I also did some furniture makeover projects along the way…

after 3

turquoise after


whole table

pink dresser

And some little decor projects…

gallery wall 2

cushion 1a front


So sitting here on our last night in this house,  I’ve got mixed emotions. I really wish we were actually moving into our house, so the fact that we aren’t kinda sucks. Our next rental house is quite nice and has great views and is closer to the beaches. And as much as I sometimes complain about this house being small and not having anywhere to go to escape from Brian, I’m actually going to miss it. It’s suited our needs perfectly, and it feels a lot more like a home now than just a rental house. I hope the people who are moving in next week enjoy living here as much as we have.

Onward and… well more like sideways than upwards, but we’re getting there!

KB sig

Monday, 11 December 2017

Feelin’ the navy & white vibe

It may be cliché, especially in a coastal house, but I love the combination of navy blue and white. Fresh white and rich navy blue together looks so crisp and classic.

navy white living room


Bold and Beautiful Bedroom: Wardley king size bed in Chalked Oak and Holkham Sand headboard €2,900 (£2,095); Arthur stool in Angus with dark oak legs €580 (£420); Tolsey rug in Navy €485 (£350); Edinburgh side table €345 (£250); Burlington small lamp with Lucile shade in Warm White €165 (£117); Cley throw in Navy Stripe €195 (£140); Grace scatter cushion in Agatha Navy€49 (£35), Sophie bed linen in Peat; Long Island medium sofa in Pale Oat €2,470 (£1,780); Beatrice scatter cushions in Brancaster Navy €49 (£35); Low water prints III and VI; paintwork in Navy.


it all started with paint


I keep wavering between different ideas for how to paint the main living space in our house. First I wanted shiplap, then I didn’t, and then I did again. And now we have 91 planks of the stuff, so there’s no turning back! I was going to paint it all white, but I had some Benjamin Moore Van Deusen Blue left over from painting the guest bathroom in our rental house and thought I’d try painting a few planks to see how they’d look.

Image result for benjamin moore van deusen blue

And I loved them! So I painted a few more…

blue shiplap

I think shiplap painted a dark colour gives it a more modern look.

dark shiplap 1


dark shiplap 2


dark shiplap 3


And seeing as the style of our house seems to be evolving into sort of modern industrial casual coastal, I think the navy blue shiplap fits right in.

blue shiplap 2

blue shiplap 1

And one of the best things about putting up the navy shiplap is that we finally have some colour in the house now – well, besides the lovely pink insulation :-)

KB sig

Friday, 8 December 2017

Moving Day! Well sort of…

First we were going to be in our rental house for one year. Then it was two years. Then it was two and a half years. And now, after two years, two years six months and eight days, we have to get our butts out of here because someone else is moving in. But as you can see, our house isn’t exactly move-in ready.

This is the front entry.

front entry

These are the bathrooms…

bathroom up


These are the bedrooms.

guest bedroom


And the kitchen.


And the staircase.


And the living room – at least we have a fireplace and the shiplap is finally starting to go up.



At least the utility closet has been painted :-)

utility closet

Yeah, so, as you can see, our house isn’t exactly liveable at the moment! Luckily we have a friend who’s currently back home in Germany and she’s very kindly offered up her house here till our house is ready.

So today isn’t quite the moving day I had envisioned. Our furniture and the rest of our crap gets to move into our house today, but Brian and me and the dogs have one more stop to make before we can move in. Oh well, as our friend said, at least we won’t be living under a bridge ;-)

KB sig

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Breaking out of my colour comfort zone

If you know me, you know that my favourite colours are purple, bright green,  turquoise, and blue. I try to break out of my colour comfort zone sometimes, but I usually end up back in my happy colour place.

As we’re getting closer to painting and decorating our house, I’m thinking about what colours I want to use. The front door is bright green.The kitchen & dining area will be navy blue, turquoise, and bright green. The upstairs bathroom will be turquoise and navy blue and white. I bought a purple area rug for somewhere not-yet defined. Can you see a pattern here?!

So I really want to come up with a different colour scheme for the guest bedroom. I have a pretty out-there idea – brace yourselves for some colourful inspiration pictures!

colour palette








Yep, that’s a whole lot of bright colours and not a speck of purple or navy blue to be seen! My plan is to install wainscoting or board & batten on the lower two thirds of the walls, and then paint the remainder top third of the walls orange and the ceiling pink. Sort of like this, but much brighter!

wainscoting 2


And maybe get our antique white wrought iron bed sprayed turquoise.


So who wants to sleep over in our crazy-colourful guest bedroom? :-)

KB sig